High-power broadband is sweet music for business, research
University of Adelaide music students Lydia Sharrad and Nicolas Storrie helped demonstrate the technical capabilities of the new high-volume broadband network, SABRENet, with an Australian-first remote duet at its recent launch.
SABRENet, which will provide virtually unlimited high-speed broadband capacity for South Australia's research and education community, was launched last month by Federal Education, Science and Training Minister the Hon. Julie Bishop.
SABRENet is an optical fibre broadband network initially linking 27 sites in the Adelaide region, including university campuses, teaching hospitals, technology parks and government research institutions, forming part of the national Australian Research and Education Network.
At the launch, Lydia and Nicolas performed Handel's Sonatina and Lacome's Passepied with Lydia on flute at Mawson Lakes and Nicolas playing his clarinet at Flinders University.
"Performing a remote duet is hard to do but this worked beautifully," said SABRENet Chief Executive Officer James Tizard.
"It's rarely been done successfully. It used dual data streams each running at 1.4 gigabits per second - that's about 200 times the typical speeds achieved by the 'high-speed' business broadband, and here we were talking broadcast quality video and audio."
South Australian Premier the Hon. Mike Rann also spoke at the launch, highlighting the importance of SABRENet in the South Australian Government's plan to make Adelaide a leading research and education destination for students and researchers from around the world.
SABRENet Chair Paul Sherlock said: "The South Australian research and education community will benefit enormously from this investment by the universities and the State and Federal governments in the State's future.
"Not only will this network allow us to transport huge amounts of data at lightning speeds, it will enable supercomputer real-time simulations, multi-screen high-definition videoconferencing, and it will allow South Australian researchers to participate in global bandwidth-enabled experiments.
"IBM researchers have estimated that if every telephone subscriber in the US made a call simultaneously, the entire load could be carried on only six optical fibres. We have at least 72 fibres to every site, and 324 on some sections.
"Until now our researchers have relied on portable hard disks, physically carried from place to place. That will now be a thing of the past."
SABRENet will allow connection to the global research and education community via two 10-gigabit-per-second services operated by the national research and education telecommunications carrier AARNet.
SABRENet Ltd is a non-profit public company formed by the University of Adelaide, Flinders University, the University of South Australia and the State Government. The Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO) is a participating partner, while telecommunications carrier Amcom (ASX:AMM) built and now maintains the network.
Story by Robyn Mills